Happy adult extension students at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music
  1. Continuing Education

Classes & Ensembles

At SFCM, we encourage collaboration and conversation, sparking the artistic and intellectual engines that make learning worthwhile and engaging. Discover your talent and feed your mind through our Continuing Education classes!

All Continuing Education classes will take place online for the Spring 2021 semester.

A non-refundable $25 registration fee will be charged once per term.

SFCM Pre-College Students playing string instruments

Continuing Education

Classes and Ensembles

Music Theory & Music Appreciation

 

 

Music Appreciation: Elements of Music from Baroque through 20th Century

Instructor: Harry Whitney
Dates: 5:30- 7 PM on Mondays February 8 - April 19 (no class March 29) - 10 classes

Location: ONLINE
Cost: $325

This course provides an overview of musical works spanning the Baroque era to the early 20th century. We will learn vocabulary, and put names to the musical elements that give us the powerful emotional responses we have as listeners. We will identify salient points from different time periods and styles, and explore fundamental aspects of music composition such as harmony, form, rhythm, and melody.

This class is equally appropriate for a music lover with no previous study experience, or a more seasoned student looking to step back and enjoy the amazing art of music!

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Introduction to Music Theory

Instructor: Harry Whitney

Dates: 7 - 8:30 PM on Wednesdays from February 10 - April 21 (no class March 31) - 10 classes

Location: Online

Cost: $325

Introduction to Music Theory will give students the tools to connect music theory concepts to the repertoire they love. This class will begin with a review of music notation; from there we will discuss scales, keys, harmonic tension and release, and short musical forms, with the ultimate aim of understanding how a composer’s technique connects to the communicative and emotional power of music. We will explore how the understanding of theory can enhance a musician’s creativity and interpretive abilities.

No prior music theory experience necessary!

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Next Steps in Music Theory

Instructor: Harry Whitney
Dates: 5 - 6:30 PM on Tuesdays from February 9 - April 20 (no class March 30) - 10 classes

Location: Online

Cost: $325

Next Steps in Music Theory picks up where Introduction to Music Theory leaves off, and is perfect for a student continuing studies or perhaps wanting to brush up on work from years past. This class will begin with a look at figured harmony and the cadential 6-4; from there we will do a deep dive into tonicization and modulation, expanded musical forms, and rhythmic syncopation. Students will analyze select works from the classical music canon with the ultimate aim of understanding how a composer’s technique connects to the communicative and emotional power of music. We will explore how the understanding of theory can enhance a musician’s creativity and interpretive abilities.

Prior knowledge of music theory is recommended. The ability to read music, and a good working understanding of key signatures and harmonic analysis will enhance a student’s enjoyment of this course. Please contact Harry Whitney at hwhitney@sfcm.edu to see if this class would be a good fit for you.

Form In Music

Instructor: Harry Whitney
Dates: 5 - 6:30 PM on Wednesdays from February 10 - April 21 (no class March 31) - 10 classes
Location: Online

Cost: $325

Form is the container of music. This class offers an intensive look at many musical forms from small to large. We begin with the shortest musical element, the motive -- think the “da-da-da-daaa” opening of Beethoven’s 5th Symphony -- and methodically move to the expansive and often-performed Rondo and Sonata forms. We will study the virtuoso forms of Concerto and Fugue, the vocal forms of Aria, Cantata, and Oratorio, ranging widely through literature of all musical periods. Students will have the opportunity to present their own analysis of chosen works along the way, with plenty of instructor guidance.

Prior knowledge of music theory is recommended. The ability to read music, and a good working understanding of key signatures and harmonic analysis will enhance a student’s enjoyment of this course. Please contact Harry Whitney at hwhitney@sfcm.edu to see if this class would be a good fit for you.

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Guitar & Ukulele 

Community Guitar Ensemble
Instructor: Scott Cmiel

Dates: 7 - 8 PM on Wednesdays from February 3 - May 5 (no class March 24 & 31) - 12 classes
Location: Online

Cost: $250

Community Guitar Ensemble consists of guitarists interested in performing ensemble works in a wide range of musical styles from the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Modern periods. Under the direction of Scott Cmiel, the guitar ensemble will prepare for a virtual performance at the end of the semester.

Each member will be assigned one of four parts and play together in a section with others playing the same part. We want players of all levels to be able to participate so while some members will play difficult music others will have their parts adjusted so they can play beautifully and with an expressive interpretation. Everyone is asked to learn their part before each meeting so during rehearsal we can work on the interpretation of each piece.

There is no need to be a virtuoso - good tone, good memory, and enthusiastic attitude are all that’s required.

If you have any questions about the orchestra please contact Scott Cmiel at scott.cmiel@sfcm.edu

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Introduction to Ukulele

Instructor: Mark Simons

Dates: 6 - 7:30 PM on Tuesdays from February 2 - April 6 - 10 classes

Location: Online

Cost: $325

Requirements: acoustic soprano, concert, or tenor ukulele, tuner, music manuscript notebook, and ability to print or visibly display PDFs while also being visible to everyone in Zoom sessions.

In recent years, the ukulele has become immensely popular and for good reason. It’s small size and the fact that it has only four nylon strings make it easy to learn, take anywhere, and pleasant to listen to. The ukulele makes a delightful accompaniment instrument but is also very capable on it’s own. We will learn several strumming and fingerpicking patterns, build a basic chord and single note vocabulary and apply these techniques to easy songs and enjoyable short pieces in a variety of styles.

No prior experience needed!

The required text for this class will be the Hal Leonard Ukulele Method Book 1 by Lil’ Rev, ISBN: 9780634079863

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Intermediate Ukulele

Instructor: Mark Simons

Dates: 7:30 - 9 PM on Tuesdays from February 2 - April 6 - 10 classes

Location: ONLINE

Cost: $325

Requirements: acoustic soprano, concert, or tenor ukulele, tuner, music manuscript notebook, and ability to print or visibly display PDFs while also being visible to everyone in Zoom sessions.

Do you have foundational skills on the ukulele but are ready to take things to the next level? In this course, we will develop a larger chord and note reading vocabulary, including learning more complex chords and alternative voicings as well as learn new songs, pieces, strumming patterns, and fingerpicking techniques. Supplemental song selections will be based in part on individual student suggestions. If you’re not sure if this class is the right fit for you, please contact the instructor, Mark Simons, at msimons@sfcm.edu for a free online consultation.

The required text for this class will be the Hal Leonard Ukulele Method Book 2 by Lil’ Rev, ISBN: 9781423416173

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Introduction to Guitar

Instructor: Mark Simons

Dates: 6 - 7:30 PM on Thursdays from February 4 - April 8 - 10 classes

Location: ONLINE

Cost: $325

Requirements: acoustic instrument preferred, tuner, music stand, music manuscript notebook, and ability to print or visibly display PDFs while also being visible to everyone in Zoom sessions.

Assuming no prior experience with the guitar, this course will take students on a journey through a wide variety of guitar styles. Using fingerstyle based technique (classical), we will learn strumming and fingerpicking patterns, learn to read rhythms, tablature, chord diagrams and notes as well as build a basic chord and single note vocabulary. We will apply these techniques and others to learning easy songs and enjoyable short pieces.  

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Cello

Cello Seminar

Instructor: Barbara Wirth
Dates:   4 - 5:30 PM every other Saturday from January 16 through May 8 - 8 classes (no class March 27th)

Location: Online
Cost: $250

In this seminar we will prepare 3 works mutually selected. Each student will take a different movement and perform for each class in a supportive environment where we discuss preparation ideas

Students should be comfortable reading music in tenor and treble clefs and have some experience with thumb position.

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Piano

 

 

Class Piano I

Instructor: Jacqueline Chew
Dates: 6:00 – 7:30 PM on Wednesdays from January 27 – April 7, 2021 (no class March 24th) - 10 classes
Location: Online
Cost: $325

Learn to play the piano through understanding how chords and scales come together in music. Beginning with music notation (reading rhythm and intervals), Piano I progresses through major and minor chords, to major scales and their key signatures. Students will learn to play simple classical pieces, as well as melodies with added chords.

Students must have access to a personal keyboard or piano during online classes.

Class limited to 8 students.

Required Text: Keyboard Strategies – Master Text, Vol.I, by Stecher and Horowitz. ISBN: 0–7935–5291-5

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Class Piano II

Instructor: Jacqueline Chew
Dates: 7:30 – 9:00 PM on Wednesdays from January 27 – April 7, 2021 (no class March 24th) 10 classes
Location: Online
Cost: $325

A continuation of Class Piano I, this class further explores the interaction of chords and major scales (chord progressions, harmonization of melodies and chordal accompaniment), while adding minor scales and seventh chords.

Students will study solo repertoire of their choice, with an informal presentation at the final class.

Students must have access to a personal keyboard or piano during online classes.

Class limited to 8 students.

Required Text: Keyboard Strategies – Master Text, Vol.I by Stecher and Horowitz. ISBN: 0–7935–5291–5

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Piano Solo Repertory 

Instructor: Jacqueline Chew
Dates: 6:00 – 7:30 PM on Thursdays from January 28 – April 15, 2021, with a final performance on March 18th. (no classes March 25th and April 1st) - 10 classes
Location: Online
Cost: $325

In this course, pianists will be able to work on solo repertoire of their choice (all styles welcome!). Selection of solo should precede the first class.

Classes 1 - 5 will be devoted to repertoire analysis and practice techniques.
Classes 6 - 7 will focus on performance preparation, with a final performance on March 18th.
Classes 9 - 10, work on new repertoire will begin.

Pianists should be familiar with major and minor keys, triads and seventh chords, and key signatures. Students must have access to a personal piano or keyboard during online classes. Class limited to 6 students.

Repertoire level: Bach Two-part Invention, classical sonatinas, Chopin Waltz in A minor, etc.

Prerequisite: Completion of Piano II or with instructor approval – jchew@sfcm.edu

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Master Class: Music of the 21st Century

Instructor: Jacqueline Chew
Dates: 7:30 – 9:00 PM on Thursdays from January 28 – April 15, 2021, with a final performance on March 18th. (no classes March 25th and April 1st) - 10 classes
Location: Online
Cost: $325

We are 20 years into the 21st century! Let’s embark on the treasure hunt of discovering recently composed music that speaks to you! Selection of solo should precede the first class.

Classes 1 - 5 will be devoted to repertoire analysis and practice techniques.
Classes 6 - 7 will focus on performance preparation, with a final performance on March 18th.
Classes 9 - 10, work on new repertoire will begin.

Students must have access to a personal piano or keyboard during online classes. Class limited to 6 students.

Prerequisite: Completion of a prior Piano Repertory class or with instructor approval – jchew@sfcm.edu

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Voice

Practical Voice Science for Singers

Instructor: Heidi Moss Erickson
Dates: 10 - 11:30 AM on Saturdays from January 30 - April 24 - 12 classes
Location: Online
Cost: $450

This course is designed to familiarize students with the anatomy, physiology, acoustics, and wellness of the human voice. As singers, your body is your instrument and a deeper understanding will facilitate healthy song and speech throughout life. In addition, we will discuss hearing, neuroscience, psychology, and evolutionary elements which are an exciting new frontier in understanding our great art. Direct applications to your own voice will be included to synergize with your performance and pedagogy experiences. This course will also introduce the idea of scientific method so that students can ask, explore, and research their own questions about singing. Practical application of these concepts is paramount to the understanding: the goal is to make this topic useful, interesting, and fun!

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Vocal Performance

Instructor: Heidi Moss Erickson
Dates: 5:30 - 7 PM OR 7 - 8:30 PM on Wednesdays from January 27 - March 31 - 10 classes
Location: Online
Cost: $450

This class explores the many performance aspects of vocal music in a supportive, online master class setting. The primary focus is classical: from art song to opera, but other genres are welcome. We work on interpretation, language, technique, voice science, drama, text, and many other aspects of this incredible art form. Students should be prepared to perform each class (memorization preferred) and can choose to work on one or more throughout the entire session. An SFCM pianist will be available for two private sessions for accompaniment recordings and coachings. The series culminates in a recorded performance in the SFCM Recital Hall. Social distancing and safety measures for all rehearsals and performances will be carefully monitored. This class is available only to amateurs and semi-professional students with singing experience: at least 3 years of private lessons are required.

Enrollment limited to 10 students per section.

5:30 PM Section:

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7 PM Section:

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An adult extension program student in a class at SFCM